European GP: Practice notes - Spyker


Spyker's all-German line-up had a challenging start to this year's European Grand Prix at the Nurburgring.

Markus, making his Formula 1 race debut this weekend, used the first session to hone his seating position and acclimatise to the handling characteristics of the F8-VII on the 5.148km circuit. The 27-year-old German improved his times throughout the first one and a half hour practice, however in the second session ran wide into the gravel trap at turn 11. Although the car did not sustain any damage, Markus was unable to rejoin the track and missed the final half an hour's running.

Adrian lost some time in the first practice as his car developed a hydraulic problem during the first installation lap, but the 24-year-old maximised track time in the remainder of the sessions as he worked on set-up, balance and tyre evaluation.

Adrian Sutil: It was a hard day today. I was not particularly happy with the car as it was difficult to drive, with slightly too much oversteer, and we don't seem to be able to get the tyres to work with the set-up. I think it is just the characteristic of the track with its high banked corners that we are having problems with, but we'll have to work on the set-up overnight, but if we can't find an improvement we will just do our best to live with it.

Markus Winkelhock: Actually today was not too bad, especially considering I had only tested the car for one day this year before coming here! I felt I went better throughout the day and I felt confident with the car after just a few laps. Step by step we improved, but unfortunately I was pushing too hard in the second session and span into the gravel. We lost around 25 minutes of the session, which was unlucky, but at the end of the day I was not that far off Adrian, who I think has been very quick this year. But I know where I am losing the time and I think I can improve again tomorrow.

Mike Gascoyne, chief technical officer: A reasonably difficult day for us. Both drivers were reporting a lack of stability on turn-in and unfortunately we weren't able to dial it out. Markus had some problems in the first session with his seat fit but he was able to improve throughout the day until his second session was cut short by his spin into the gravel. Nevertheless he will have learnt a lot from today and I'm sure he can improve again tomorrow. With Adrian we didn't have any real issues although he lost some time this morning with a hydraulic problem. Overall though we have a lot of work to do overnight to improve the cars for tomorrow.

To check out our Nurburgring practice gallery, click here

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Published: 20/07/2007
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